TALICH QUARTET 13
Beyond the divides, Erwin Schulhoff summarised contemporary influences; with
his works performed in Salzburg, Prague, Vienna and Geneva, he became an
eminent figure among the composers of his time, using a style nourished by both
modernity and tradition and spiced with audacity and imaginativeness: his String
Quartet no. 1 shows those features quite strongly.
Composed in Prague in 1924 and first performed at theVienna Festival in September
1925, this short quartet adopts classical sonata formbut places the slowmovement
at the end, thus creating a contrasting decrescendo. Slavonic melodies and strong
rhythms predominate exuberantly in the first three movements, particularly the
Allegro giocoso alla slovacca
, whose frenzied, dance-like rhythm has a somewhat
The final movement,
Andante molto sostenuto
, is more sombre, its line drawn out
into a tormented, meditative melody, wreathed in strangeness.
This capacity for expressing great energy as well as sounding the depths of
melancholy is something we also find in the works of Janáček.